British Soap Operas Essay

1676 Words 7 Pages
British soap operas are, of course, overly dramatic. In nearly every soap opera, including the Eastenders, Coronation Street, Emmerdale, and The Archers—the characters constantly discuss money and drink excessively. Of course, these shows are not made to be taken literally—they are mindless entertainment, not serious social commentary. However, behind the drama, they raise subtle questions about the nature of Britain today: the clashes between cultures and religions, upper and lower classes, and the young rebelling against the old. All of these things could be happening at the very same time, and underlining all of these issues is the idea that no one should be trusted. British people are often the victims of stereotype, but to watch …show more content…
A bartender mixes cheap, terrible powdered drinks and tests it on customers in order to make more money. One woman runs into the bar and demands alcohol, shouting “It’s time to liven up this place” (Newman). In Coronation Street, every other scene features alcohol. Two young men, pessimistic about their futures, guzzle beers in a room littered with empty beer cans. Two other characters pour whiskey into a teapot and have straight alcohol teatime, complete with milk. In Emmerdale, a depressed father meets the vicar in the pub for a drink. Of course, alcohol consumption in these shows is never the cause of problem—but it is interesting to note that in most of the dramatic scenes, alcohol is consumed, possibly fueling these confrontations. According to these shows, the only jobs available in Great Britain for those in the lower class are bar tending, hotel work, hairdressing, or waitressing. They usually spend their time working on ways to gain more money, leaving their pubs and salons in jeopardy as they waste time and quid on get-rich-quick schemes. The upper classes, which live sometimes just about twenty feet away from the “poor,” have problems, too. The arguments in The Archers radio show, for instance, are very different from the arguments in Coronation Street, Eastenders, or Emmerdale. Usually, the arguments of the wealthy revolve around investments, property trading, or developments and housing—or about who should head
Open Document